February 23, 2010

Comptroller Maragos Announces Operational Audit of

Problem Plagued Nassau Crime Lab

Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos has ordered his Audit Department to commence an operational audit of the Nassau Police Crime Laboratory. The audit will focus on operational procedures and vendor contracts to determine internal control issues at the Crime Laboratory. The audit will also review the management policies and actions to ascertain if there were shortcomings and how they may have contributed to errors.

The recent suspension of the Nassau Police Crime Lab has raised significant concerns including the potential financial exposure to the County.

"It is alarming that the history of problems with the lab dates back to 2006,” Comptroller Maragos said. “Our audit will try to focus on the department’s administrative policies, procedures and overall operations. The bottom line is that we have to determine whether proper procedures have been followed and, if not, ascertain what measures should be implemented to restore integrity to the system.”

The Comptroller notified the offices of the County Executive, Police Commissioner and District Attorney of the operational audit earlier today.

"The Comptroller’s Office has an obligation to identify risk in all County departments, including those in law enforcement,” Comptroller Maragos added. 

The auditors will also review existing contracts, grants and the impact on funding sources, if any, by the suspension of service at the Crime Lab and make pertinent recommendations regarding the Crime Lab’s operations.